Some circumstances require the ability to see a target at night or in extreme low light conditions. In comes the night vision scope adapter available from Bestsight.
The Setup for the Bestsight DIY Digital Night Vision Scope with Camera and 5” Portable Display Screen
Why pay for a night vision scope when you can get some accessories that will convert your rifle scope into a night shot special? These accessories can mount directly to your existing scope, attaching to the eyepiece on one end, and an infrared light that attaches to the shaft of the scope past the dials, just behind the objective bell.
The piece attached to the eyepiece (the camera) is connected to a 5” monitor that mounts to the scope tube, preferably just before the turrets. In all, this is primarily a three-piece setup, that can be easily attached and detached at the user’s discretion.
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No Additional Sight Adjustments Required
As long as the existing scope is sighted in correctly and accurately, what you see on the monitor will be what you would be looking at through the optical lens of your eyepiece. The Bestsight attachments will only be as accurate as your scope.
The Night Vision Scope Details
As you could imagine, the camera is small, meant to couple up to your eyepiece. It is capable of regular daytime operations as well as night vision. It’s a 3 million-pixel 16mm camera that’s HD, equipped with a USB interface. Buy it on Amazon.
The Rifle Scope Sleeve
The rifle scope sleeve is the coupling that connects the camera to the eyepiece. The package that this assembly comes in supplies two different styles of sleeve. Also, there are fittings included that help to attach the sleeve to different sized eyepieces.
It is worth noting that the sleeve mounts just behind your eyepiece, not directly to it. With the sleeve mounted behind the eyepiece, you can still adjust the eyepiece through a slot on the sleeve while the sleeve remains stationary. The camera attaches to the other end of the sleeve, that you can align appropriately to the reticle later on after setup is complete.
The display has a 5” screen that controls whether you’re going to see a daytime setting or night vision setting. All of the controls for the display are around the back of the unit.
Included in the package should be a mount with screws, that will ultimately connect the display to the shaft of the scope, just before the adjustment turrets. With the display and the camera mounted, it’s time to align the camera with your cross-hairs.
Before you turn everything on, you’ll need to insert the batteries which are sold separately. The display itself takes two. With batteries in place, you can then connect the wire from the camera to the wire from the display via the coupling. Just plug them together and turn on the display.
You’ll notice right away that the camera is likely off. You’ll know it by the reticle being off-angle instead of being as you’d see it in the scope. It takes a little playing around with the camera and the couplings to get it just right, and secure.
The Infrared Light
Fortunately, the light supplied with the assembly takes the same battery type as the display. The light only needs one battery. The mounting bracket for the light is included in the package and should be mounted just after the turrets.
After you secure the bracket, you can slide the light into place and secure it to the bracket. Once the infrared light is put into place, you’re ready to roll.
See my page on Bushnell Scopes HERE.
Things to be Aware of About the Night Vision Assembly
Different things can significantly enhance your experience with this unit. The first of which would be the light itself. Being an infrared light, it isn’t obvious when the power is on or off without looking through the display set to night vision. Make sure that it’s off when you want it off, and your life will be that much easier (less drain on the batteries).
Some find that the supplied light isn’t good for anything over 50-100 yards. However, there are other infrared lights that you can get that will fit the system, which is more powerful, allowing you to see that much farther out.
A Rifle that Makes Sense
Another thing that I’d like to mention is that some common sense needs to be applied as it relates to the weapon that you’ll be wanting to mount this on. These are best for lighter gaged rifles, as the recoil will jar things around on the more powerful guns. This isn’t to say that it won’t work, but you’ll be spending more time fooling around with the camera alignment the more powerful the caliber after a couple of shots.
Blinded by the Light
One thing worse than walking down a dark street just after staring into your phone, is to shut off your display while you’re out in the woods, expecting to be able to see anything at all. It might be a good idea to give yourself a moment for your eyes to adjust before you go walking into something that doesn’t want to move.
Batteries Not Included
Because the batteries are not included, you’re going to have to get your hands on some. You can get four and a charger online reasonably cheap, but I wouldn’t stop there. Think about it. You’ll need three batteries to use initially, and you’ll probably want another three on hand if they start fading on you while you’re out in the field. So, it wouldn’t be a bad idea to invest in no less than six (I’d personally go for twelve).
Yes, it would be more like a video game than actually looking through a scope, but it can be fun for night time shooting, and the display can be a relief to those who find peering through an eyepiece to be tough on the eyes. Once this unit is set up and secured properly to your scope, this assembly is well worth the investment.